According to the survey, metropolitans are going to be the biggest consumers of processed food because of their increasing per capita income and changing lifestyle. Over 2,000 respondents were surveyed for this study conducted by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASSOCHAM).
Over 82 per cent of workforce prefers packaged food rather than eating outside or from roadside dhabhas in cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and others.
Eighty eight per cent of the parents surveyed said that packaged foods are preferred mainly by nuclear families where both husband and wife are working or by bachelors who try to avoid hotel food or people who do not have the time or expertise to cook.
The survey further states that Indian food processing market is expected to show fast paced growth in next five years, clocking an annual growth of 40-60 per cent. “This all will be encouraged by changed trade rules and increased demand among the people,” states the study.
Key drivers for this demand include changing demographics, increase in income levels, urbanisation, growth in organised retail, improvement in packaging, easy access to freezer facilities and increased demand for frozen non-vegetarian foods.
Key players in the packaged food industry include Hindustan Lever which sells tea, instant coffee, biscuits, pulses, instant beverages; Nestle which sells instant coffee, milk and milk products, ready-to-eat foods; PepsiCo which sells aerated drinks, fruit juices, cereals, snacks and Haldirams which sells sweets, namkeens, syrups, crushes etc.
The study further highlighted that the Indian packaged food industry is likely to touch a record $30 billion by 2015 from the current level of $15 billion, which include snack food, ready-to-eat food, healthy and functional food.